On a campaign stop in Michigan April 19, President Obama paused at the Henry Ford Museum to sit on the bus Rosa Parks made famous.

Obama, who said he used the opportunity to reflect, commented that the courage that Rosa Parks showed that day is the same courage that many Americans are showing today.

“So I actually had the chance to sit in Rosa Parks’ bus,” he said in a speech, referring to the vehicle, now in the museum, that was the scene of the Montgomery, Ala. seamstress’ act of defiance of segregation laws in 1955 that sparked the civil rights movement. “I just sat there for a moment and pondered the courage and tenacity that is part of our very recent history, but is also a part of that long line of folks, sometimes nameless and oftentimes didn’t make the history books, but who constantly insisted on their dignity, their stake in the American Dream.”

Michigan is expected to be a battleground state in the 2012 presidential campaign as the state’s economy has struggled despite the rebound of the auto industry. While Ford, Chrysler and General Motors have made it through the tough times of three years ago, Detroit narrowly avoided having the city’s finances taken over by the state.

Despite that, Obama said he believes his ideas and values are what the people in Michigan and across the nation will need moving forward.

“The good news is that I think we’ve got the truth on our side, and I think the values that we’re going to be talking about over the next several months are not Democratic values or Republican values, they’re American values,” he continued. “And I think people are going to be, once again, choosing a better future and our best traditions.”